Oakland Raiders and the Defense of the 2016 Season

Forwarded by Scott Davis former Los Angeles Raider

The Oakland Raiders have finished a season that didn’t conclude with a trip to the playoffs, but it was a season of sizable improvement nonetheless. The Raider team as a squad was much better than anyone have witnessed in quite some time. There is no doubt that the Raiders are a team n the right direction and will be a cempetitive force seasons. However, there are still some gapping holes on this roster that must be addressed.

And in the minds of many, the biggest divide the Raiders need to address is quite possibly the offensive line. At least, it is according to self proclaime industry experts as well as the many folks who jumped on that band wagon quickly after the saeson ended.

 The fact is the Raiders could use some upgrades along the line. Donald Penn – assuming the team does the smart thing and re-signs him – and Gabe Jackson have one side of the line nailed down tight. And Rodney Hudson is a solid anchor in the middle. Most believe that it’s on that other side of the line – the J’Marcus Webb andAustin Howard side of the line – that could stand to be upgraded a bit.

but in the interst of wht is best or a top priority….

Upgrading that side of the line should not be the biggest concern this offseason. And certainly not enough to warrant using a first round pick to do it. The Oakland Raiders should take an extensive peek around the free agent market if they see upgrading their right side of the line as imperitive. There are plenty of players to be had with tlent that couod fill thge holes in the offensive line – and more importantly, veteran established players like Russell Okung and Andre Smith perhaps – who are going to be available soon.

But then again, if something isn’t broken, why try to fix it?

some have identified Webb and Howard as being sub average – or at least the weaker aspects of the current Oakland line. However, PFF  ranked the Raiders’ offensive line as an overall sixth best in the entire NFL. Hmmm? Many would agree that the offensive line was one of the Raider’s biggest shortcomings prior to and early on in the 2015 season. But… and it indeed became one of the team’s biggest strengths. That’s impressive bt anyones terms.

The line did a decent job protecting  Derek Carr enough to alow him to pass for just under 4,000 yardswhile also plowing the way Latavius Murray to become a pro bowler caliber palayer and Oakland’s first 1,000 yard rusher since Darren McFadden surpassed the threshold in 2010. Under the coaching asvvy of Mike Tice, Oakland’s offensive line was , regaless of the naysayers, one of the NFL’s better units in 2015.

If you can secure an upgrade through free agncy that would be a good win for the Raiders.  top draft selection in the name of the offensive line would be a mistake in a line that is getting the job done by most terms.   Especially in light of some larger needs that ned to be address.

The biggest and most obvious need is in the Raider’s secondary. Charles Woodson is retiring, so the team need to fill the safety position– although that need could  possibly be filled out well by signing somebody like Eric Weddle. What the Raiders desperately need is a cornerback who can make some plays. Beyond David Amerson, the Raiders’ corners wernt producing the best results by any terms. Travis Carrie had an sub average season for a consistency basis and D.J. Hayden provided little to write home about. Carrie has the talent and plenty of upside and could be a solid slot corner. The Raiders might consider transitioning him over at the safety spot sinc ehe has proven in 2015 he could handle the role.

If the draft sloting works out the Raiders might be best served by taking a hard look at Florida State’s Jalen Ramsey or Clemson’s Mackensie Alexander.  those two have the talent and athleticism that may very well mesh well at the pro level.

Additionally the Raiders could really use a linebacker who could hold down duties in the realm of pass coverage.  Some solid talent exists n the team now but it not hard to remeber the, Oakland’s linebackers getting the short end of the stick on a good chunk of pass plays in 2015. Curtis Lofton ended up being more of a liability than the asset the organization has hoped for.

Neiron Ball was a unexpected surprise in 2015 as he proved capable at both run and pass defense, but his season was cut short by injury.

Somewhere it became a popular mantra  that defense wins championships. Arizona v. Carolina, Denver v New England featured 4 teams who had defenses ranked in the top ten this season. Superbowl matchup teams – Denver and Carolina-  have the first and sixth ranked defenses in the NFL in 2015.

Jack Del Rio knows that is takes awesome defenses to win big a the end of the day. Coach Del Rio has committed to building a defensive powerhouse in Oakland.

Kiper is dead wrong- no new insight. The Raiders don’t need to use their first round pick on an offensive lineman. The offense where the needs are most. Defense brings home the bacon.

Oakland Raiders and the Defense of the 2016 Season

Scott Davis of the LA Raiders On The Oakland Raiders Future Home Field Still Up In The Air

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Here’s what’s happening regarding the inevitable move of one or two NFL teams to the Los Angeles market. The league confirmed the Raiders, Chargers and Rams, as expected, have forwarded proposals relevant to their bids to make such a move by close of business o yesterday. The Rams are proposing to build a extravagant  new stadium in Inglewood, California, and the Chargers and the Raiders are uncharacteristically uniting to propose their own new stadium in Carson, California. Both are considered the LA market. The proposals are quite substantial and significant. “The proposed Inglewood stadium can host an additional 30,000 fans to support standing room only fan attendees. Thus there is a greater shared ticket revenues through the regular season, postseason and Super Bowl, paraphrasing content from the Rams’ application.

And the owners collectively are presented with making a decision as to which proposal exactly is most favorable to the “league’s collective interests” should such a move to take place. The owners will begin a series of votes today in Houston concerning the complicated matter.

To add to the excitement surrounding the whole situation Jerry Jones is now in the mix with the various proposals concerning teams that are vying to move their franchises to the Los Angeles market. Along the way he may have positioned himself as an Oakland Raider fans 2nd favorite league owner. Why?

Jones has injected himself into the dilemma surrounding which team is a best fit for the LA market. The Cowboys owner has officially offered a proposal that suggests the St. Louis Rams and San Diego Chargers be the two teams to share a new stadium in Inglewood California. Therefore, and based on his insights, the Raiders would remain in Oakland next season.

Ultimately the decision falls on a vote by the rest of the NFL team owners who essentially hold the fate of which team, if any, will make the move the Los Angeles which once was home to both the then LA Raiders and the Los Angeles Rams. It could be that Jones proposal is an early indicator of who is likely to make the move which should leave the Oakland fans feeling pretty good about their team remaining in Oakland.

The NFL’s head cheese, Commissioner Roger Goodell, distributed a lengthy 48-page report to all NFL owners this past Saturday basically making all aware that Oakland Raiders, St. Louis Rams and San Diego Chargers had not been supplied credible stadium proposals respective to and from their current home stadium cities. This coming from a news reporter source who has seen the report first hand.

Bottom line is the St. Louis plan “lacked certainty” according to the source based on the fact that is relied on significantly more financial support from the league than it had been promised and would most likely need even more government approvals to get it done.

At the same time Oakland didn’t even offer a completed stadium proposal, and San Diego’s assurance of $350 million dollars promised toward a new local home football stadium is contingent on a public vote.

If St. Louis’ proposal to remain in St. Louis had been embraced by the league, it could have paved the way for owners to approve the Raiders’ and Chargers’ joint $1.7 billion stadium proposal in the Los Angeles suburb of Carson California. The St Louis Rams are pitching a competing $1.86 billion stadium in Inglewood.

Goodell’s report, according to the source, informed league owners that both proposed Los Angeles stadiums “were ready for development,” although he did not offer any sort of recommendation as the decision is clearly the responsibility of the owners relative to approving which teams make the move.

The vote is set to take place when all owners assemble today in Houston.

At this point the word is that neither stadium proposal is likely to get the required 24 votes, although a Chargers and Rams scenario has been gaining some traction. Additionally Jones who is one of the league’s most powerful owners going all in backing the Rams’ Inglewood stadium proposal.

To add to the drama such an Inglewood scenario makes sense based on the facts that San Diego Chargers owner Dean Spanos is considered to have the highest percentage of support among owners concerning a move and the St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke is in the top 2 richest owners in the League.

On top of the momentum the Rams and Chargers seem to have, it has become fairly common knowledge the Raiders don’t have the funds and organizational capacity to be a viable candidate for a move to the Los Angeles marketplace.

Although the deck seems increasingly stacked against the Raiders managing a move Spanos has publically remained steadfast in teaming up with the Oakland Raiders.

Time will tell. Money talks and under the right circumstances big deals like this many times work out quite differently as incentives change and looming deadlines approach.

Scott Davis of the LA Raiders On The Oakland Raiders Future Home Field Still Up In The Air

Scott Davis Posts on Why Oakland Raiders Winning First Two NFL Regular Season Games Is Key

by Scott Davis – Former LA Raider, blogger

For many die hard football fans the numbers tell the story. Not the numbers on the jerseys of players but the statistics those players produce. Then it’s a matter of deciding which numbers are the ones that tel the story and make the difference. It’s a game of chance and prediction and everyone has their own secret sauce combination of data that will reveal a team’s propensity to do well or…not so well. For Oakland Raider fans the most pressing end game a the moment is trying to figure out how the team will stack up favorably at the end of this coming season. It’s not an easy task especially when the Raiders are essentially in a rebuilding phase and there are no stats from the past decade to hang your hat on. Well maybe there are a few bright spots if we dig really deep into the numbers. Certainly one promising bright spot is Derek Carr’s preformance to date which does offer a glimmer of hope when talkng about the Raiders future performance potential. Ultimately however we have to see the team take action in this off season integrating new plans to turn things around. The real litmus test is that first game of the season. We’re not talking about the slew of preseason games chock full of trial and error and meant primarily to test different game plans and find the right mix of athletic talent that will bring success to the Raider organization. We’re specifically pointing to earliest part of regular season play and the need to get off to a good start. Historically game one and two provide solid key performance indicators for how the season may carry on through the rest of the season. Not surprisingly teams that enter the 16 game season with zero wins in their first two games aren’t going to overwhelm fans with an abundance of wins over the remaining course of the NFL season. Starting out 0-2 historically proves that getting to the playoff with be an uphill battle. On the other hand when a team manages to go 2-0 at the start things begin to look much brighter in terms of reaching post season play. Almost 60% of the time, according to figures over the last eight years of league output,  teams struggle to achieve a playoff berth with a 0-2 start. Conversely, when an NFL team can win their first 2 games of the year, they make it to the post season close to a 2/3 of the time.

Here’s how the numbers pan out over the past 8 years in the NFL. A total of 66 teams over the course of seasons from 2006 to 2014 have faltered and entered the third week of the schedule with 2 losses. To be more specific exactly only 5 of the total teams with 0-2 starts have reached the post season (stats via oddsshark.com). So as the old Raider saying goes… “Just Win Baby”, especially the first 2 games. Pretty or not, according to this mark, the team must post 2 wins from the get-go to see the post season Promised Land come 2016. Statistics are a moving phenomenon and no one can say that this trend will hold true entering future seasons. But why chance it? The track record for the Oakland Raiders over the past 14 years hasn’t been remotely close to award winning. God bless the Raider fans for hanging in there. Yes 2002 was a good year for the Raiders with impressive play on both sides of the ball and they achieved noteworthy success into the playoffs and making it to the big game. Then things soured and continued to stay south for the past decade plus. The Raiders have not had a 2-0 start in far too many years.

Enter 2015. The Raiders have a lot to do and prove. They have been making significant changes to usher in a new era of success with coaching overhauls and aggressive strategies to bring in the kind of players that can make it all happen. They will need it because the Raiders lead by coach Jack Del Rio will come up against good competition that also have the same goal of early wins, impressive stats on both sides of the ball, playoff berths, etc., etc. at the start of this season, more specifically the first two games will be a big test. The Raiders are scheduled to play two 2014 playoff teams- the Ravens and Bengals- in the initial first two games this year. The outcomes of those game will certainly tell us quite a bit about the Raiders new found strategy and their ability to contend for a spot in the playoffs. The Raiders will also play both of the first two games in 2015 on their home field. Will it amount to being a home field advantage? That remains to be seen. Wins on the home turf would definitely set the right kind of tone and be a great catalyst for propelling the team head-on into a promising season. Confidence building is huge in the minds of players and coaches. The psychological benefit, which any member of an NFL team will tell you, is not to be underestimated. To be sure, there is nothing sure about how the outcomes of your first two games will affect the rest of your season. But once again, why chance it? The Oakland Raiders can win early and can have an season to be proud of. A 2-0 start would help in a big way.

by Scott Davis Oakland Raiders news, sports, posts

Scott Davis Posts on Why Oakland Raiders Winning First Two NFL Regular Season Games Is Key

Scott Davis Subscribes to the Oracle John Madden’s Wisdom About the Raider’s Head Coach Jack Del Rio

John Madden left the league in retirement forty years ago. Since then he has made as much a name for himself in his many years as a well-known sports broadcaster as he did as a coach in the NFL. Many feel Madden is without a doubt on top of the list as an all-time top Oakland Raiders head coaches. He took the Raiders to the pinnacle in the 1970’s and then retired for good near the end of that decade. To support widely shared claims that he was one of the organizations greatest leaders he recorded an impressive 76.3 winning percentage, lost a total of only 32 in the regular season and had a winning postseason record of 9-7 at the helm of the Oakland Raiders.

As a highly achieved head coach, a longtime fan favorite and a highly esteemed broadcaster Madden’s insights and seasoned viewpoints regarding all things NFL still remain highly respected in the league by those that run it and those that opine on it. His publicly shared approval of recent new Raider Head coach hire Jack Del Rio shows that Mr. Madden’s opinion is welcome and revered by those who are closely tied to the organization. He is decidedly pro Del Rio not just based on his track record as a coach but also for the strategies and forsight he brings to the team.

Madden has often been sought out for his opinions relevant to the Raiders bringing Del Rio on board and he consistently waxes that the newly hired head coach is a key piece to the puzzle for restoring the Raiders to the levels achieved in years past. Madden defines one of Del Rio’s talents as being able to further improve Derek Carr’s play through acquiring and developing a formidable defense to bring balance and give rise to the offensive attack. He feels that, as the newly minted head coach, Del Rio wont mice words and certainly isn’t likely to pump out false endorsements about the ability of his players unless it’s based on their walking the walk and forming their reputation through actions not words.

John Madden recently said this of the Oakland Raiders new head coach: “Jack Del Rio is the right coach for them. He understands you can help a quarterback as much by building a defense as you can by getting him a receiver. He’s going to make them legitimate. They lived on the myth that the Raiders are tough and all that for a long time, when they weren’t. Jack sees through that myth.”

Del Rio’s impact on the team will only reveal itself over time so we will have to wait a bit to find out if he brings the secret sauce that can direct the Raiders to sorely needed successes. He did have success with the Jacksonville Jaguars by drawing out latent talents in seemingly marginal players and producing playoff runs with a group of athletes not initially expected to achieve much if anything especially in post season play. A worthy head coach can reach deep inside the minds and hearts of any type of player and help franchises realize what was thought not to be otherwise achievable. John Madden envisions such a future with the quality of coaching that Del Rio brings to the table. Going back in history a bit it was the likes of Jon Gruden and Bill Callahan that were last successful at reaching the post season with the Raider teams they led. Del Rio and company have a lot of ground to cover to re-establish the Raiders as team that dominates its conference let alone being able to rule in a highly competitive league. Good Luck Jack Del Rio!

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Scott Davis Subscribes to the Oracle John Madden’s Wisdom About the Raider’s Head Coach Jack Del Rio

Scott Davis L.A. Times – Good Times | Oakland Raiders In the Los Angeles Market Mix for New NFL Staduim

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Sourced for Article by Sam Farmer

The world-class backdrop at the Arizona Biltmore, a Waldorf Astoria in Phoenix, set a casual tone, but the NFL’s 32 team owners were all business dressed in professional attire for three days of closed-door sessions.

One topic on the schedule, garnering more serious attention as of late, is the absence of a professional football team (and stadium) in the Los Angeles California market.

It would appear, even to the casual onlooker, that what has been a loosely discussed concept is fast gaining traction and is becoming more of a matter of a reality than a mere passing conversation to be swept under the carpet..

A stadium in the LA market was the subject and focus of an hour-plus proposal to team owners culminating in detailed talks on the Inglewood stadium proposal and the opposing version for Carson. Owners who once shrugged off queries about a team and stadium in Los Angeles showed deeper interest and responded with thoughtful and enthusiastic answers about the looming issue.

Robert Kraft, owner of the Patriots and a member of the league’s committee on Los Angeles opportunities, was optimistic about there being two teams in L.A. within next year.

“We have some real good options,” Kraft said. “And now we’ll see what happens in the end game.”

John Mara of the Giants, also on the committee, wasn’t about to go so far as to say there would be two teams, but specified that the likelihood of reestablishing a NFL presence in L.A. is just a matter of time.

Jerry Jones of the Cowboys, who is confident on an Inglewood stadium, said, “A deal is in the crosshairs.”

It hasn’t happened yet but the NFL is getting closer every day to a presence in L.A. The big difference today is that instead of stadiums and other supporting or surrounding venues being proposed by non-NFL franchise owners, the owners themselves are now taking the lead and actively supporting stadium proposals.

“The developers can do all they want, but until the owner of a team wants to go out there, it’s not going to happen,” said Woody Johnson of the Jets at the owners’ annual meeting.

Stan Kroenke of the St Louis Rams has taken it a step further and has released comprehensive plans for a forward-looking stadium on 298 acres at Hollywood Park in Inglewood. Knoenke claims to have the necessary rights in place to begin construction as soon as this year. Kroenke, the NFL’s second wealthiest team owner, isn’t reliant on a second team to help finance a $1.8-billion stadium on his proposed site which is the old Hollywood Park racetrack. The project would include a concert venue, residential units, a number of restaurants, office space, and retail.

Dean Spanos of the Chargers and Oakland Raiders Mark Davis want to develop a sports complex on 168 acres in Carson, and they are just weeks from having the same rights.

The Rams, Chargers and Raiders do not find any comfort in the fact that they are playing in dated stadiums and in some instances are deteriorating physically. With year-to-year leases moving either or all three organizations is much more feasible.

Eric Grubman, the NFL’s Executive Vice President, said “We have a good chance of getting back to Los Angeles soon, but I cannot speculate on exactly who, how or when,” Grubman was appointed by Commissioner Roger Goodell in part to specifically oversee the L.A. market. “There are too many variables that we don’t control, so if you guess now, you have a high probability of being wrong.”

See various proposed renderings of a new LA stadium

It is highly unlikely any team will make any such move this season, but there is a very real possibility of a team or two moving to L.A. for 2016. There is a 2 month window in which an NFL organization can submit a relocation request and that timeline falls between January and February. That would preclude any team from such as request in 2015 except there have been murmurs about the NFL agreeing to accept such formal requests outside the typical two month window to allow teams to make such decisions prior to the beginning of 2016..

The three cities most in danger of losing their NFL teams aren’t laying down and are making serious efforts to keep their teams in place.

St. Louis has offered up plans for a $985-million stadium along the Mississippi River, and is developing strategies on how to secure the land and the hundreds of millions in public funds to bankroll the project.

San Diego has pinpointed a piece of land close to the Chargers’ current stadium. A group selected by the mayor is slotted to present a funding proposal by May. Team representatives are pessimistic about getting public support to subsidize the building of such a project.

The Raiders are in a holding pattern waiting for a response from the developer representing the city of Oakland and Alameda County. Early indicators suggest a feasible proposal is a long-shot.

With three teams and two stadium concepts being considered in the L.A. metro market, there are over two dozen possibilities. A couple are as follows…

Rams and Raiders sharing a stadium

Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis has an emotional tie to Hollywood Park, where his father wanted to develop a stadium. Informal surveys indicate the Rams are the most popular of the three teams in the L.A. market, followed by the Raiders.

The Oakland organization is not in good shape financially and would therefore benefit from forging a shared deal with the Rams.

Spanos however would likely attempt to block any such moves to L.A. as it would weaken his position and hamper the leverage needed to get a stadium deal in San Diego.

Chargers and Raiders share a stadium

This scenario avoids moving the Rams back to play in California which would place four NFL teams in the State.

The Raiders hurdles are high for getting any substantial traction on a new stadium in the Oakland area which offers additional promise for a Carson deal.

The Carson site would be conveniently location for fans from both L.A. and Orange County, and would have abundant space for tailgating.

The site however, was once a toxic landfill and although much cleanup work has been done, there I much more to do. Additionally, the Rams Raider fans are not fans of one another.

If the Raiders were to go it alone

The Raiders would get their new home, and St. Louis and San Diego would keep their teams.

The NFL however seems to continue to feel the Raiders are one of the league’s most polarizing teams and sense it may be unreasonable to expect that the team could pull in the revenue needed to pay for a stadium. Their ability to attract corporate and premium customer support is suspect as well, according to some within the NFL.

It’s also fair to question whether the NFL would willingly hand over the L.A. market to Mark Davis based on his father’s history of litigation against the NFL over who owned the rights to L.A.

Either way it’ll be fun to see it play out over the next few years!

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Scott Davis L.A. Times – Good Times | Oakland Raiders In the Los Angeles Market Mix for New NFL Staduim

Scott Davis California LA Raiders |Oakland Raiders Unlikely to Draft Quarterback in 2015

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By Chase Ruttig

In the 2013 and 2014 NFL Drafts the Oakland Raiders used picks outside of the first round to bring in a quarterback prospect to varying success, finding their QB of the future last year in the second round in Derek Carr while their 2013 fourth round pick in Tyler Wilson didn’t make it one year with the team as he was sent to the practice squad before being picked up on waivers in his rookie year with Oakland.

If you count 2013 UDFA signing Matt McGloin, the Raiders have brought in three rookie quarterbacks in two offseasons, two of those players starting games in their rookie years with the team. However in 2014 it is likely that the team will be passing on a quarterback with their 2015 Draft picks for the first time in three years after finding their future in Derek Carr along with securing a quarterback depth chart that the team is comfortable with.

Bringing in Christian Ponder as a backup to pair with McGloin, it is looking like the Raiders have three quarterbacks they can trust this year and most importantly two backups who would be reliable options in a worst case scenario in which Carr could not make a start. That means it is unlikely to see general manager Reggie McKenzie do any further tinkering in the draft at quarterback, finally having the ability to address other needs without worrying about the team’s situation under center during the weekend of the draft.

Bleacher Report’s Mike Tanier has the Raiders listed as the 23rd team most likely to draft a quarterback in the 2015 NFL Draft, giving them a 7.5% chance of selecting a passer even if the team appear to be set with a Carr/McGloin/Ponder trio going forward. The third year McGloin serving more than enough purpose as a quarterback with upside in the stable behind Carr for the time being.

It should be a relief for fans that the team no longer needs to try to win the lottery with quarterbacks in the draft each year, finally having what they feel is their answer at the position in Carr who showed great potential as well as leadership abilities during his rookie season. That lack of need for a QB allows the team to address other holes in the draft, something that the team desperately needs to do as the current Raiders roster is still an incomplete one even if it is getting better each passing offseason.

Don’t rule out something out of left field with the Raiders or any team in the NFL if they feel they have the best pick available at a position that isn’t necessarily a need, but it could be a safe bet to guarantee that Oakland will not be in the rookie quarterback market. Something that you couldn’t say many times over the past decade plus before Carr’s rookie season. Now the team’s attention goes to other areas first, and it is about time for a franchise that has had horrendous luck with quarterbacks since Rich Gannon to have a steady presence at the position with no need to go into the draft looking for a player who *could* be their passer of the future.

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Scott Davis California LA Raiders |Oakland Raiders Unlikely to Draft Quarterback in 2015

Scott davis Raider article selection: Raiders Owner Mark Davis Proving Worth to the NFL

Top writers forwarded By Scott Davis Oakland Raiders

By Vic Lopez

Being a ball boy should be an awesome job. Especially if you’re a teenager whose father just so happens to own the team. Of course that is unless your father is the late great Al Davis.

According to Scott Ostler of the SF Gate Chronicle, current Raiders owner Mark Davis was once fired by his father while working as a ball boy in his teen years. No special treatment for Al, do your job or get lost….even for Mark.

Mark Davis was a relative mystery for most Raiders fans through the years. For such a die-hard fan base who worshiped the late Al Davis, his son was barely an afterthought. But now here he is, nearly four years since the passing of his father Mark Davis is in charge of guiding these new Raiders back to relevance. And he is using a drastically different approach.

“Whatever role Mark Davis takes, he will not be a clone of Al Davis. Mark will not be the West Coast version of Hank Steinbrenner.” Scott Ostler SF Gate Chronicle

We all know the history of Al Davis and the battles with the NFL, especially with commissioner Pete Rozelle. NFL Films once named the feud as the number one feud in NFL history. As fans we have also witnessed an almost contrived media bias against the Raiders. Poking fun or bad mouthing the Raiders became epidemic in the last years of Al Davis’s reign. The NFL didn’t like the Raiders and the Raiders led by Al Davis didn’t like the NFL.

“The Autumn wind is a Raider”…..and with that wind comes change. The passing of Al Davis was a monumental shift in not only the balance of the Raider’s organization, but a possible shift in the NFL as well. After Al’s passing a league wide moment of silence was observed in his memory. After that silence was an undetermined future for the Raiders and its new owner Mark Davis.

Fast forwarding to 2015 and we see the emergence of a solid relationship forming between two unlikely partners.

The recent NFL’s owners meeting concluded with added clarity to the Los Angeles relocation talks. With that came an almost non-story that slipped under the radar. The NFL and Raiders could be partners in a relocation to LA. That’s right, the team that sued the NFL to move to LA, only to return back to Oakland, may now be working hand in hand with the NFL to be one of two teams in the LA market.

If Al Davis were alive, would this even be a possibility? I highly doubt it. I also highly doubted his son Mark Davis, could have made it this far either. The son of enemy #1 who offers no experience as an NFL owner and provides very little in liquid assets seems hardly the candidate for the NFL’s massive plans for a new football mecca in LA. Mark Davis had failure written all over him. From a funky haircut to a fledgling franchise, Mark was not an owner whom the NFL could trust nor believe in.

Yet in only a few years, that may have changed.

“While Mark may never get out of the shadow of his father, he does have the opportunity to take this Raiders franchise to heights never before seen.”

Bottom line is the NFL holds the keys to Los Angeles. This isn’t the ’80s, no owner is going to sue for the right to move to LA and win. The NFL has its stamp on the market and has big plans in order. It has been reported that in addition to being home to two NFL franchises, the Los Angeles site would become home to the NFL Network and possibly an NFL experience/theme park option. The NFL is thinking BIG. They also want guaranteed success in the second largest market in the US. The NFL wants a sure thing with competent owners who are in cooperation with the NFL, not opposed to its vision.

Mark Davis has groomed himself to be just that. Despite a few photos at the strip cluband the local Hooters, Mark Davis as an NFL owner seems to be following the company line, which is in stark contrast to his father.

Competing Carson and Inglewood Stadium Proposals

An example, is Mark Davis’ recent strong remarks regarding the Greg Hardy situation. Davis took a moral stand and despite fan protest choose not to sign the talented yet troubled star. Mark and his GM Reggie McKenzie have accumulated a roster of model citizens and created distance from their criminal image of the past.

On the business side Mark Davis has shown a willingness to use every card he was dealt. The Oakland stadium situation is a murky one at best, and Mark has tried to gain as much leverage as possible. From San Antonio to LA, Mark has increased the likelihood of a new stadium deal for the Raiders ten fold. The announcement of the Carson proposed site and recent reports of Alameda County joining Oakland officialson the Coliseum Complex, show Mark Davis has turned nothing into something almost overnight.

If Mark Davis can pull off a stadium deal, whether in Oakland, LA or elsewhere, he would cement himself as a credible and highly competent NFL owner. Mark’s ability to work with the league and find a viable and financially beneficial stadium option could elevate his standing with the NFL to a level his father never enjoyed or wanted. While Mark may never get out of the shadow of his father, he does have the opportunity to take this Raiders franchise to heights never before seen. Not just winning football games and a super bowl, but evolving into one of the most profitable and successful sports franchises in the world. Truly embracing the world-wide fan base of the Raiders and its iconic image.

Marks ability to build a relationship with the NFL and breath new life into the Raiders will set him up for continued success in a league that outgrew his predecessor.

Scott davis Raider article selection: Raiders Owner Mark Davis Proving Worth to the NFL